Laura’s SIP team visited the La Kretz Innovation campus to meet with Eli Kaufman - the Director of Communications for the RiverLA program - in order to discuss, among other things, the L.A. River and his organization RiverLA. RiverLA is “a nonprofit organization with a mission to ensure the 51-mile Los Angeles River integrates design and infrastructure to bring people, water, and nature together.” This presentation provided information from recent research compiled by the organization about the state of the LA River, as well as the potential impacts of revitalization.
While our visit was short (because we took public transportation), it yielded more in-depth information surrounding the organization. The organization wants to open up all 51 miles of the river to the public creating jobs, green space, a greater sense of community. The group claims that it will create this equally, therefore, minimizing the effects of gentrification from the potential rapid increase in the cost of living. The group wants to remove the concrete bottom from the river, allowing for the replenishment of subterranean water supplies. The group, however, has not offered any concrete plans; instead it has published research, but has not disclosed current funding sources.